ByKarly Rayner, writer at
Movie Pilot's celebrity savant
Karly Rayner

Everyone knows that White Men Can't Jump is the sports movie of the '90s, but did you know the movie is also a goldmine of insane trivia?

This movie has political intrigue, groundbreaking law suits, and kind of proves its own name. Don't believe me? Check out the awesome facts below:

White Men Really Can't Jump!

Believe it or not, Woody Harrelson never quite managed to dunk, despite his triumphant moment in the movie.

Harrelson thinks that he could dunk a 9.5ft rim (the professional height is 10ft):

It was a 9-½-foot rim and I just couldn’t quite get it and it was killing me. It was actually my first introduction to yoga. Wes went to his trailer after we’d been doing this and I’d been losing money to him. I was just so frustrated. The sound girl goes to me, “Woody, why don’t you stretch a little bit? Well, your legs are a little tight, maybe if you stretch, it might help you.” I stretch for a few minutes, grabbed a ball, went out and slammed it...

But, unfortunately, the producer had made a few alterations when Harrelson wasn't looking different story to tell. Cozart explained that:

They lowered it a few inches when Woody was in his trailer. He dunked it easily when he came out of the trailer. Stretching doesn’t give you another four, five inches in hops

Whatever Harrelson, we all know size doesn't matter!

Some Things Never Go Out of Fashion!

Because cycling is always as gaudy as hell, you can still purchase Wesley's Colnado cycling cap for $28.99!

Political Intrigue

A basketball movie might seem like no place for politics, but one of the references to Kennedy's assassination has a bizarre back story.

In the movie Woody Harrelson's character makes a reference to suspected John F. Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. In real life Harrelson's own father had also been targeted as a possible accomplice in the killing.

Yo Momma!

Wesley Snipes was deadly serious about the plethora of yo momma jokes scattered through the movie, but his favorite was considered too dirty for the movie. Snipes explained:

I went to New York and told everyone to send me all of their “Yo momma” jokes. I made a rhyme book for momma jokes. I called Biz Markie. I called everybody. Ron didn’t let me keep my favorite one, which I had gotten from Biz Markie. I tried. I did it again and again.
It was...
'Your momma so nasty, she keeps ice in her panties to keep her crabs fresh'

Now I've Sheen It All!

Charlie Sheen was the first choice to play Billy Hoyle. I guess he did have the quintessential 90s look totally down!

Gloria Could Have Been Very Different

Ron Shelton (the writer of White Men Can't Jump) explained that Gloria was originally going to be very different. He said the part was:

Written for an Anglo woman and not a Puerto Rican woman. Some very big names were finalists, but Rosie had a quality that was unique, to put it mildly

And who were the big finalists? Apparently Rachel Griffiths and Holly Hunter were in the line up.

First Use of Booyah in a Movie?

Okay, this isn't a legitimate fact, but surely this must be the first movie to feature the word Booyah?!

False Profit

In 1997, writer Ron Shelton sued the studio for withheld net profits. A jury ruled in his favor, awarding him $9.8 million.


Is White Men Can't Jump THE Sport Movie of the 90s?


Latest from our Creators